Queen's University

Corporatizating Activism Through Sport-Focused Social Justice? Investigating Nike's Corporate Responsibility Initiatives in Sport for Development and Peace

Inspired by assertions of “creeping commercialization” in issues of social justice, this article, co-authored with Lindsay M.C. Hayhurst, seeks to address the entanglement of privatization with sport for development and peace initiatives. We look specifically at Nike’s history of “social responsibility” to situate the N7 initiative, for Indigenous health, within a larger landscape of privatized social justice. Critical discourse analysis was used to unpack Nike’s annual corporate social responsibility (CSR) reports. In addition, a critical discourse analysis (CDA) of the #DeChief movement, which lobbies against the use of “Native” mascotry, was conducted via the social media platform, Twitter. We observed public criticism against Nike’s incongruous business practices in supporting Indigenous health on one hand, and financially benefitting from the sale of harmful Indigenous caricatures on the other. (Read More)